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History of St Nicholas at Wade

St Nicholas at Wade comes from the Old English ‘wæd’ meaning a ‘ford’ preceded by a saint’s name; therefore, ‘St Nicholas at the ford’.


St Nicholas at Wade parish church is a Grade: I listed building, dedicated to Saint Nicholas. The Normans built it in the late 11th century as a Chapel-of-Ease to St Mary’s, Reculver. It became a parish in its own right in 1294. Enlargement of the church took place in the 14th and 15th centuries. In 1552, there is a record of one bell in the tower. In 1615, Joseph Hatch, cast two bells, adding another ten years later. In 1692, John Hodson augmented the bells to five with a tenor. In 1800, Edward Hasted described St Nicholas’ church as consisting of ‘three isles and three chancels, having a square tower at the west end, in which hang five bells. The church is a handsome building of slint, with windows, doors and quoins of ashlar stone’. In 1876, the Victorian architect Ewan Christian carried out a major restoration of the church. Alfred Bowell added a treble bell in 1922…. more